Staying Awake Along The Way Part 2
Perhaps one of the most important things to highlight is that we are individuals, with individual needs. From the beginning it is important to bear in mind that a teacher advises, but each one must choose their own exercises and take responsibility for themselves. I have known too many meditation students who pass from one teacher to another, from one technique to another, waiting for someone to touch them with a magic wand and transform them into enlightened beings. It doesn't work that way.
There is no teacher, technique or group that can make our meditation go well. The process takes place within us and only we can do it. Others can make useful suggestions or discourage us, but the experience of meditation cannot be induced from outside. External influences can affect our meditation, but they can never substitute for sincere dedication, that is something one must do for oneself.
Practicing meditation requires constant effort. Although there are not few trade-offs, there are periods when nothing seems to be happening. There are even seasons when, for no apparent reason, meditation becomes more difficult. In those moments others can encourage us, but we must persist in the practice. Accepting this responsibility for ourselves and reacting to the difficulties that this means can strengthen our self-esteem, self-discipline and self-esteem.
Possibly, the most important thing that one learns by supervising our own practice of meditation is that there is something in us, an inner teacher, who knows much more than we believe. He lives in the mountain that is in the middle of the sea of changes, and we can learn to listen to him when he gives us a direction.
Of course, the main disadvantage of supervising our own practice is that the teacher knows no more about meditation than the one who meditates, although our inner teacher may know more than we think. The other considerable disadvantage is that there is no one to write down and correct bad habits, such as too loose or rigid postures, lax consciousness, or poor concentration. Working with a teacher or a group induces us to be more aware of what we do and gives us an objective response from others towards us. There is also the undeniable psychological advantage of having to explain what we do to others. For many this is a motivation to practice daily, although sometimes it is not always done afterwards.
Working with a group on a regular basis means that no matter how negligent we may be the rest of the time, when we meet with the group, we meditate.
In meditation there are always more things to learn, more things to strive for. A good teacher can judge our willingness or lack of preparation to initiate us into new techniques with more precision than we do.
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